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Countries speed up COVID-19 vaccine inoculation programs Updated: 2021-01-18 09:26:16 KST

America's top infectious disease expert says the nation is "weeks away" from the possible approval of new COVID-19 vaccines.
Speaking on NBC News on Sunday, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, expressed optimism over the possibility of fully evaluating the vaccine candidates made by Johnson and Johnson and AstraZeneca.
As for President-elect Joe Biden's goal of administering 1-hundred million doses within the first 1-hundred days of his presidency, Fauci, who will be staying on as Biden’s chief science adviser, said it's "absolutely doable."
In Britain, the number of people who have been inoculated stands at over 3.5 million, surpassing the country's accumulated cases.
Ten new massive COVID-19 vaccination centers will open in the UK from Monday, as the country looks to meet its target of inoculating 15 million people by mid-February.

"Look we've got this three point roadmap to make sure that by February 15th, we've got 15 million people, the, the highest risk people, 88 percent of those most at risk of dying as well as result of coronavirus. We want them to get their first dose. We then want to increase that by another 17 million by the Spring. That would take around 90 percent of those most at risk would then have had their first dose. And our target is by September to have offered all the adult population a first dose."

Over 1 million people in Germany have received their first doses, about 1.26 percent of the country's total population.
The country is still battling a rapid resurgence with nearly 19-thousand new cases reported on Saturday alone.
Elsewhere, India has launched the world's largest COVID-19 vaccination campaign.

"In a few minutes, India will launch the world's biggest vaccination drive. I congratulate all Indian citizens on this occasion."

Indian authorities hope to give shots to 3-hundred million people, beginning with medical staff and essential workers.
India, which has reported over 10 million COVID-19 cases so far, has given emergency approval for AstraZeneca's India-made shots as well as the "Covaxin" vaccine, developed by Indian biotech company, Bharat Biotech.
Kim Hyo-sun, Arirang News.
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